Many people, including successful entrepreneurs who have been in the business even before the digital age of information, have acknowledged that technology has transformed the way people do business nowadays. Digitalization has enabled a new wave of business owners. They are called online entrepreneurs. In fact, there is no definition of online entrepreneurs in Wikipedia just yet. But basically, an online entrepreneur is a founder of a business that operates and derives income over the internet. That definition includes many different types of business: SaaS, B2B services, and online retailing.
At the frontline are the so-called “millennipreneurs”, who are changing the way consumers think, act, and buy with their innovative ideas. Are you looking to join the bandwagon? Then read on to find out how to become an online entrepreneur of the future.
Begin with an idea
Let me state the obvious: every successful business began with an idea. Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak started Apple as an idea where they want to change how people perceive computers, so they created compact computer devices at Jobs’ parental home (specifically in their garage).
The truth of the matter is, becoming an entrepreneur is a bold choice because the tradeoff is doing away with the stability brought about by steady income and medical benefits.
Study the competition
What is a business without competition, right? Whether you have an innovative idea of a business or looking to create a product/service similar to that of an existing brand, there will always be competition – direct and indirect.
Before rolling out any business plan, one of the first steps to take in becoming an online entrepreneur is knowing what’s happening out there. Do social media listening, subscribe to your competitors’ newsletters, know what they are doing (and not doing).
Even a simple google search of the business you are looking to get into can tell a lot about your competition.
Create a business plan
To ensure proper execution of your business, a proper business plan in place is crucial to your success as an online entrepreneur. The business plan is where you will map out your findings after you analyzed your competition.
This is also where you can identify your goals, ideal customer, and assess the feasibility of your would-be business revenue-wise, so you can plot your plan of action on how to market your product/service.
If you are still on the fence about writing a business plan, you might be convinced to do so when you learn about the top reasons why it is a critical part of starting any business (in this case, an online business).
Set your goals
This is part of the business plan, but it serves a higher purpose when it comes to business. Goal setting is highly-encouraged for any business, big or small. Goals are specific, realistic, achievable, and measurable.
Business goals are set to provide a roadmap for the company and to enhance motivation for you and your employees (should you have any in the early stages of your journey as an online entrepreneur).
Business goals are identified throughout the lifetime of a business, and they vary depending on what the company is to achieve. They can be as simple and short-term as targeting a specific number of hours you need to put in each day.
Just as important is setting goals for the long haul – because it does not hurt to have growth plans in place a year after you signed your first client or received your first order online.
If there is one major reason why online entrepreneurs love
what they do, it’s because they can practically work from anywhere; be that on a beach in a tropical country, or at home with the kids, it’s a perk that is totally hard to resist.
Launching an internet-based business is very much popular these days because almost everything can be done online.
But success still takes hard work.
Aside from the idea that sparked your interest in entering the business world, you will need a decent computer and a reliable internet connection, and the essential tool you will ever need to launch your business – your website.
What good is your idea if you don’t have someplace to sell your products or services? Depending on your business, you will need a professional-looking website that shows the services you’re offering. Maybe a shopping cart and a method for payment if you’re going the online retailing route.
Mind your marketing and analytics
Are your sales increasing? Are your website visitors increasing? What content from your website are they looking at the most? What blog posts are getting the most clicks? These are some burning questions we are always asking when it comes down to analyzing your marketing efforts’ performance.
Look: During the beginning stages of setting up your online business, you will definitely be wearing multiple hats. And most likely, you will be doing the marketing and data analytics yourself at first. Do not feel overwhelmed by this.
You can go the extra mile by getting online marketing and google analytics certification. However, if time is not on your side, there are tools online that will help you execute a digital marketing strategy in your level of understanding and decipher your insights and analytics.
This way, you can establish what strategy is beneficial to your business and know what isn’t working, and you can then adjust your strategies as needed.
Take the leap
If you want to succeed, you can expect to work more than the usual 8-hour workday for the first few months. The good news is that every second that you put in work creates a positive impact directly on your business, which can work to your advantage if you play your cards right.
You just need to put all the excuses out of your mind and take that leap of faith. To give you a bit of a head start, we talked about some ideas on starting a home-based business in this post.
The future is what you make of it. Hard work plays a huge part in being successful. So, the question is, are you ready to be an online entrepreneur of the future?
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